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Dr. Michael
Dr. Michael, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2177
Experience:  Licensed Ph.D. Clinical Health Psychology with 30 years of experience in private practive and as a clinical psychology university professor.
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How can I explain my decision to force my daughter to move out of my house to her chi

Customer Question

How can I explain my decision to force my daughter to move out of my house to her children? I have custody of them and I
have allowed her to continue to live with me since Dec of 2006. I did not gain custody until 2008. I love her, but feel I am enabling her at this point to make no change in her habits/life. I am most concerned with the 12 year old's reaction. Of course, there is more to this story, but the decision to move her out has reached a priority level for me.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 6 years ago.
Hello. I believe I can be of help to you with this issue.

Whatever you explain to the kids, your daughter needs to agree with in advance---you need to give the same message simultaneously. I would suspect your daughter feels that you have no good reason to force her out of your home, that she may even feel "entitled" to stay with you and that asking her to leave means you are rejecting her and don't love her anymore. Is this correct?

Before we decide what to say to the kids, can your daughter genuinely understand that your action should help her increase her level of effort and her determination to become more self-reliant and generally, advance her own personal growth and self-care?

Have you given thought to a 2-3 week transition period, in which your daughter would get her own place and move in, but the kids would stay with you for the first couple of weeks while mom acclimated to the idea, the psychological stress etc., of being "on her own"; after which the additional stress of having the kids would occur when the move in with her. Is this a practical idea, or based on what you know, a good or bad idea?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
She will absolutely reject the idea.She will never agree because she does not believe she is at fault. Everything wrong in her life is "my fault" and she is quite vocal about it here. There is not a possibility of the children moving in with her at this time. She is simply too unstable. She does not work, smokes pot every day and makes life extremely difficult for everyone in this house. I have told her doctors I feel she needs commitment./rehab to really begin to move forward, but she has refused those options. She has placed herself and this family in a life threatening situation and lives in denial about the real magnitude of it. I know you dont have a lot of information and it may be impossilbe to answer.
Expert:  Dr. Michael replied 6 years ago.
Your second post was enormously helpful in provided the needed details. It wasn't clear that this woman really can't take care of herself or her own kids.

I would work to arrange for your daughter to move to a rehab half-way house and program if possible; or simply send her on her way to live in a womens' shelter for a time.

What you say to the children is that you are sending your mom out of the house so she can get the medical care she needs for her health problems, and that she needs to live somewhere else, so she can get the regular, daily care she needs. Your daughter will contradict you to her kids, blaming you for "kicking her out" for no good reason. What you do is simply continue to restate the message, without defending yourself and without extensive explanation i.e., you are not helping their mother by allowing her to stay with you and by having her move out, you hope she will get the medical care she needs, and get a job to pay for her own apartment. So the message, "I cannot help your mother if she lives here and so she must live somewhere else and get help from someone else" is the only explanation that will probably make sense.

You will need to change the locks on all of your doors and if need be, move her belongings to a storage unit, which you would rent on her behalf----your writing suggests you are far brighter than the norm and can figure out these logistics quite easily.

I hope you find this information useful. Let me know if I have overlooked any aspect of your question.

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